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Sports science and medicine two faces of the same coin

In a riveting presentation on the Olympic Movement Medical Code yesterday in Siem Reap, the Chairman of the Olympic Council of Asia’s Medical Commission Dr M Jegathesan made a strong case for the application of best practices for medical care and services while insisting that medical decisions be left to the health professionals and not dabbled with by other officials.

The subject ought to be dealt with in the true spirit of the Olympics, argued Dr Jegathesan, who also heads the medical commission of the Commonwealth Games Federation. Touching on the intricacies of the Medical Code, the revised version of which was adopted by the International Olympic Committee in 2006, the medical commission chief said: “It protects rights and health of athletes, recalls basic rules of best medical practices in sports, and reflects general principles recognised in the international codes of medical ethics.

“Sports science and medicine are two faces of the same coin,” he added. “The science deals with a methodical and well researched approach to better training methods and nutritional values, which lead to better performances. The medicine will deal with the consequences, sports related niggles, injuries, side effects, prevention and elimination of recurrences.”

Dr Jegathesan admitted that Cambodia has been a “late comer” to the international sporting scene, but said he was “glad that a beginning has been made.”

“It is an expensive affair to build a full-fledged sports medicine centre and any progress for a country like Cambodia has to be incremental,” he said. “You cannot set a time frame on this, it is a gradual process, and I am glad to note that the Kingdom is displaying the zeal and fervour to move forward in this sphere.”

German sports therapist Joerg Teichman, who has spent nearly three decades in the Asian region and is currently with the National Institute of Sports Medicine in Malaysia, is of the firm belief that an emerging country like Cambodia has to get into sports sciences and medicine for the sake of creating a sound sports culture as much as to build a healthy society.

“It definitely leads to mass health awareness,” he said. Teichman will join hands with Cambodia’s Dr Suy Ravuth to conduct a three-part workshop for the participants of the four-day sports medicine course at the Hotel Cozyna Angkor, including a demonstration segment tomorrow when the course draws to a close.

Yesterday, Dr Danish Zaheer, Vice President of the Asian Federation of Sports Medicine representing Brunei Darussalam, took the participants through three different aspects - children and adolescents in sports, sports biomechanics and performance, and also anterior cruciate ligament deficiency in women’s knees.

Two of Cambodia’s top sports medicine experts, Dr Srey Vantha and Dr Sdoeung Chea, are scheduled to share their knowledge and expertise during today’s scientific sessions. Dr Srey Vantha will take up an overview of ankle injuries, as well as touching on knee pain and shoulder injuries in sports. Dr Sdoeung Chea will draw insights into nutritional needs for aspiring young athletes.

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